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How Much Does a Basenji Cost? Puppy Prices and Expenses

Basenjis are small, highly intelligent sighthounds best known for being barkless. These dogs, instead of barking, make use of other sounds such as whines, yodels, or screams to express themselves. In contrast to their size, these dogs are very energetic and require a fair amount of exercise.

They are known to be very bitey and owners would soon discover that their belongings have chew marks if they aren’t careful. Yes, they might be a little mischievous, but they do love their owners very much.

This the reason why I got a Basenji; they make excellent companions for people who can properly take care of them.

Through the years, I have gained knowledge and understanding of how to properly raise Basenjis. However, I find that many first-time owners have difficulties in taking care of their Basenjis, especially because of their tendency to become out of control.

Others simply want to know the mean price of Basenjis to have an idea. Thanks to my research and comparison with other experienced owners, I have made estimates, tables, and lists on the costs of a Basenji.

How much does a Basenji puppy cost? Mean Basenji prices taken from reputable breeders range from $800 to $1,500. However, some bloodlines of the said breed have the potential to exceed $2,000, nearly doubling or tripling the price.

There are also other factors that can increase the price of your future Basenji but do not worry because we will discuss them further in the following sections.

In addition to finances covering the initial expenses of the puppy, we also must weigh other expenditures. Such costs include initial item fees, monthly maintenance, annual maintenance, and additional services that you or your dog might need.

All the listed stuff appears as lists and tables in this article. This article was made to instruct prospective owners like you on projected costs in Basenji ownership.

Average Cost of Basenji Puppies

Deciding to own a Basenji would require commitment, energy, and lots of patience. Lower prices for such breeds go for as low as $800, but there are many variables that could increase the market price.

As sighthounds adept at watching and guarding, raising these pets from puppyhood requires a great deal of commitment.

Here are some considerations that might alter the cost of your puppy:


For breeds that need the utmost care and preparation, breeder style is a consideration that should always be looked at by future owners. The source of the pup takes up a large part of their cost.

For example, decent breeders will price more than those who ignore essential dog characteristics, ensuring that your Basenji is in its peak condition.

High-quality breeders are good starting steps to start your journey as an owner and they are always a good investment. This will be discussed further in parts to come.


The main issue for most Basenji owners is the breed’s disobedience and ability to neglect commands. This trait could come from their parents, and this makes their bloodline an important factor to consider.

Highly trained lineages cost more than lesser trained ones. An example of these is championship bloodlines which could increase a Basi’s price to $2000 or more.

Additionally, your pup’s parents are also sources for hereditary diseases, and it’s best to examine them.

Breed Certification

As owners, it is important to know about our future dog’s identity before purchasing. Breed registration is one of these documents and they aim to prove or validate the identity of your pups.

Breeders who provide these records will of course cost you more as it ensures the standard of the dog as a potential pet. The American Kennel Club is a prominent organization responsible for certificates.

Disease Tests

While health issues are not usually a problem, Basenjis can still face some breed-specific conditions. These diseases include Fanconi syndrome, anemia, pupillary membrane, retinal atrophy, and hernia.

To guarantee a puppy’s health, breeders make use of several medical tests which would of course cost them some money. The fees are then charged to you as pre-ownership costs.

Basenji owners should be wary of eye disease since the breeds are known to be sighthounds. They are rendered disabled without sight as they mainly use their eyes to move around or hunt.

Don’t view these expenses as additional trouble. Instead, see it as an investment. You don’t want to end up spending more due to neglected medical issues.

Other Treatments

Some breeders offer core vaccine shots before the puppies are sold. Others also provide for deworming and tick elimination to guarantee quality. Your puppy’s pre-care would surely increase their spending, but you will also benefit from them.

Basenjis from respected breeders typically include most of the factors considered above. Looking at those is critical when you buy your first Basenji.

Bad sources do not cover medical costs because they plan to sell their puppies at a very low price. Any Basenji puppy priced lower than $300 should always be avoided.

Types of Basenji Breeders: Where to Get Your Puppies and Their Costs

Searching for a good source is fundamental for any future dog owner. You should always be careful with your sources, as there are breeders who are only concerned about money. Here is a list of the Basenji sources on the market for your guidance.

Puppy Mills

Puppy mills breed puppies that are excessively neglected and unhealthy. As businesses focus on quantity rather than quality, they bulk breed various types of dogs to make profits from them.

These establishments usually disregard the health conditions of the puppies, as they only want them to be sold off immediately.

Getting a Basenji from a puppy mill cuts the price to a quarter. They only cost around $300 from these sources. You might save money now, but you’ll eventually run into tombstoning medical costs as time passes by.

Never get Basenjis from puppy mills, as subscribing to their products also means supporting their deeds.

Backyard Breeders

Basenji backyard breeders are people who have little to no interest in training dog breeds. However, due to unexpected circumstances such as dog pregnancy, they end up having extra puppies.

They sell the pups because of financial needs or to simply lift-off dog care obligations. Although not all of them have bad intentions, they still lack adequate knowledge in high-level Basenji breeding and could neglect some important areas of development.

While their prices drop to $300 to $500, they are still not a good choice. As highly intelligent dogs with the tendency to be disobedient, a Basenji needs the optimal environment from puppyhood.

I recommend you to not purchase from them as you could also end up spending more money in the future due to pre-ownership neglect.

Reputable Breeders

These are the best Basenji sources out there. They have spent years of studying and practicing to properly raise Basenji pups, and they know every up and down of the breed.

These individuals treat puppies with utmost love and care, and they also give them the necessary nutrition and socialization to better train them for their owners. Additionally, they give you certificates, tests, and documents to guarantee your dog’s authenticity.

The prices they offer range from $800 to $1,500, with other bloodlines exceeding $2,000.

Yes, it might seem a bit high, but the costs also cover for certifications, tests, and pre-ownership fees which they use on your future dog. With them as a source, your puppy’s medical condition and temperament will be in tip-top shape.

My dog was bought from a reputable breeder at a price of $1,200. I never regretted the decision, as my Basi remains healthy until now. It was really a bang for my buck, and I’d gladly get a new one from a reputable breeder again and again.

Initial Cost of Basenji Ownership

With the initial Basenji puppy cost laid down before you, I know that you are now excited to get your hands on these cute furries.

Before that, let us first look at some important expenses from items or services which could come together with your puppy.

With the help of my experience as a Basenji owner, I have created a list of the initial items and services which I used in the primary stages.

Item TypeCostTOTAL COST$400

These prices will change as time passes by. Later on, you will get to know your dog better, and you will find the product best suitable for him or her. What I put on the list are just estimates of my initial payments for my dog.

My First Year as a Basenji Owner

Apart from the one-time buy items displayed on the table, annual maintenance spending also exists and should not be neglected. Again, I have created a list which explains all my spending on my dog’s first year.

This might seem a bit high, but it will lessen due to the fact that you only buy your puppy once together with the items that he or she will need.

Rebuying stuff such as beds, toys, and harnesses will depend on when those things would be destroyed, so you’ll eventually save some cash.

If you got your puppy from a respected breeder, expect lesser medical costs as you will be guaranteed of your dog’s health.

Item TypeCostTOTAL COST$3,395

As you can see, the cost of the puppy took up most of the first-year expenses. Because of this, you need to consider your source greatly.

Here are the adjustments we can make as owners to lower or increase our maintenance costs:

Not opting for obedience classes: Basenji obedience classes are not compulsory, but they are highly suggested. As highly intelligent animals, they are prone to be very stubborn. Untrained Basenjis are hard to deal with, and it is better to start them early.

Obedience training could also control a Basenjis tendency to chew everything that he sees. With proper positive reinforcement techniques from professionals, your dog’s temperament could become manageable.

As extremely intelligent pets, they can be very receptive to correct training. Sessions could cost up to $50 per session. I enrolled my Basenji in a $30 weekly session for 6 months, and I decided to end the deal once I got a grasp on the basics.

Lessening on treats: Treats are great ways to positively reinforce a Basenji into obedience. Because of this, I reserve a lot of treats to control my Basi’s behavior.

Lessening on treats could be a great way to cut costs, but I chose to go for a higher treat budget since I found it helpful in building relationships.

Insurance plans: For my Basi’s insurance, I chose a package worth $160. The package was a $50 initial payment with a $10 monthly addition. I thought that this would suffice since my dog was fairly healthy.

Moreover, my vet visits did not cost that much, and they were just general check-ups. As I said earlier, getting a good Basi source is integral in saving up on medical costs.

Basenji Average Monthly Expenses

From jaw-dropping initial fees, my Basenji’s monthly maintenance diminished. Food, insurance, treats, and emergency funds were the only contents of my dog’s monthly maintenance, provided that no unexpected expenses appear.

Below is a table of my monthly payments.

Item Type Cost TOTAL COST $120

Despite their small frame, Basenjis have a muscular build. They use this physique for their exercise, and they tend to wander a lot. To make up for this, they need high amounts of food intake to replace energy reserves.

Small dogs have a high metabolism, so they eat up to 2-3 times a day. Protein is the name of the game for Basenjis since it helps in sustaining them in their activities.

Basenjis are one of the easiest dogs to groom. They are clean-freaks, and they are able to clean themselves similar to a cat.

Compared to other dogs, my Basenji sometimes goes for a month without a bath, provided that he won’t catch grease or mud in his playtime.

We still need to brush their teeth and trim their nails regularly for safety purposes. They also don’t shed a lot, so you don’t need to worry about hair being stuck everywhere.

With your grooming ritual, I recommend that you also check for any possible health threats in your body just to be sure.

Basenjis break things. A lot. This is why I employ a much, much-needed emergency fund for repairs or replacements on the things that they wreak havoc on.

If I am not careful, I might find a shoe or a slipper torn down to bits because of this breed’s inherent curiosity and mischief. It really takes a lot of patience and keen observation to raise these little furries, as they can be annoying at times.

Additional Expenses

There are some additional expenses that your dog could use growing up. I did not include these in the list, but you could make use of them in the future.

Dog Day Care: Being active dogs that need various sets up activities throughout the day, they need to have a companion. If you are unable to meet the physical needs of your dog, dog care is a good alternative.

Leaving the dog with another human takes trust in the guardian. Approach someone you deeply trust as a caretaker. Neighbors and relatives are good choices when it comes to this.

Travel and Shipping Fees: If your breeder is not in the same region as you, you can opt for dog delivery services. However, I do not recommend this as it might cause trauma to your Basi.

An alternative to this is traveling to the breeder and getting the dog yourself. This incurs a lot of travel expenses and could add up to at least $500.

Finding Products for Your Basenji

The best Basenji products are always durable. Your items should be able to endure endless Basenji attacks and bites, and also keep their attention away from your valuables.

Here are some common Basenji products we need to get as owners:

  • Harnesses
  • Food and water bowls
  • EXTREMELY durable toys (for biting)
  • Bed
  • Grooming tools
  • Premium-quality dog food
  • Dog crate (optional)

In my experience as a Basenji owner, I have gathered the best sites which recommend items best suited for your Basenji. These sources are well-loved by pets and owners alike.

Food is a site that knows the hardships of Basenji raising. They recommend food choices that could help prevent hyperthyroidism and obesity. For Basenjis, an all-natural diet is necessary, and they need to be small in size to be easily consumed.

Protein-based food sustains a Basenji’s hype. My dog’s favorite is the Tru Dog Freeze-dried Meat Bonanza, which is a jam-packed meal consisting of beef meat and organs, as well as much needed Vitamin D extracts.

It is also hypoallergenic and gives off zero smell which is an advantage for your dog’s mouth care. It only costs $37 per pack but it is a really great deal.


Amazon offers a fair amount of Basenji products, but you need a keen eye to spot a good one. These are my recommendations on common items.

I always suggest others to make use of harnesses rather than leashes. Products such as PetSafe 3 in 1 Harness protect a dog’s neck and avoids choking and gagging.

The item comes in different sizes, so you’ll always find a good fit for your Basi. It only costs $27, excluding the shipping fee.

Any medium-sized bed would be suitable for Basenjis. Get a bed with a washable cover to ease up on cleaning. These products could range from $25 to $40. Some memory foam beds can cost a bit more, but they are good investments.

To avoid destruction in my home, I distract my Basenji with chewable toys. I opted for a Benebone Real Flavor Dental Dog Toy which is a flexible and durable pastime for my Basi.

Priced at $20, this product helps keep my Basenji’s destructiveness at bay. The flavor also prevents him from biting other valuables in the house.


Zuke’s Mini Natural training treats bought again from Amazon, helps me with my Basenji’s training and reinforcing. It’s a duck-based treat packed with quality protein and all-natural food ingredients.

Priced at only $15, I usually buy two packs of this to help reward my dog after a successful command. My dog’s mouth water at the sight of these incredible treats, and I recommend it to others as well.

Final Thoughts

Your future Basi might seem to be hard to take care of, but your efforts will always be rewarded with your dog’s loyalty and love.

With the help of this guide, you now have an idea of what your future journey would look like – combined with a heads up on possible expenses. Enjoy your adventure as a future Basi owner!

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